The Lakewood Police Department is one of the largest departments in the state, according to its web site. It features…More 123 staff, 102 commissioned staff, eight community service officers and 11 civilian support staff, according to the Lakewood police web site. It started full operations in November of 2004.
The department's level of safety, service and reliability is comparable to other quality police departments in the South Puget Sound. They serve a racially and economically diverse population of about 60,000. During the 1990s and into the new millennium, the public perception was that the city had crime, gang and other illegal activity problems. The LPD has worked hard to reshape the city's public image by significantly reducing crime through a number of measures. Since the department became active, it has reduced violent crime rate by more than 45 percent and overall crime rates by 24 percent, according to the department's web site.
The city's police department formed special crime and housing units to deter crime. There are a number of hot lines that empower Lakewood citizens to get involved and contribute to crime prevention. The Lakewood Police Department's mission statement is to Protect life and property, reduce crime, build better communities, respect and protect individual rights and enforce the laws of Lakewood and Washington state.
Less than one year ago, four Lakewood police officers were gunned down in a coffee shop just outside the city. The tragic news unpleasantly placed Lakewood on national TV. Police jurisdictions and other civic organizations across the state came together to mourn the losses of the four police officers.